Katter's talk on Quad Bikes
Katter's talk on Quad Bikes

Flood concerns over “problematic” upgrade

A North Queensland politician has put two dangerous floodways in his sights after calls to change the Townsville Northern Access Insersections Upgrade plans fell on deaf ears.

The Black River community is fighting against what they say are dangerous plans to update the Bruce Highway.

But Roads Minister Mark Bailey has held firm, saying the road upgrade will be safer for all traffic users, including B-double trucks.

Now, Hinchinbrook MP Nick Dametto is calling for the state government to improve flood mitigation on Black River Road if the upgrade goes ahead.

The Katter's Australian Party MP said the two floodways on Black River Road between the Aurora Drive intersection and the exit to the Bruce Highway often made the road unusable in the wet season.


Black River land clearing beside the Bruce Highway. Picture: Alix Sweeney
Black River land clearing beside the Bruce Highway. Picture: Alix Sweeney

Under the new plans, highway access through Church Road will be closed, leaving Black River Road as the only option.

"While I agree with residents that the design of this upgrade is problematic, if Transport and Main Roads are intent on ramming this through then they had better make sure Black River Road is up to scratch," Mr Dametto said. "We can't have an entire community isolated because a main thoroughfare is not equipped to handle our wet season."

Mr Dametto has plans to write to the Minister to ask for the road to be improved. The road must be improved not only to handle heavy downpours, but the expected increased traffic volumes.

He said he was frustrated to have reached somewhat of a "stalemate" with Mr Bailey.

Originally published as Flood concerns over "problematic" upgrade